'Friends' reunion special delayed amid COVID-19 pandemic

The outbreak of coronavirus has delayed a special reunion of "Friends."

On March 19, the Hollywood Reporter reported that a special "Friends" reunion on HBO Max, Warner's new streaming service, will be delayed due to a coronavirus outbreak in Hollywood. A source said that the reunion with all the original cast had been brought in. It was originally planned to be filmed on March 23-24 at Stage 24 on the Warner Bros, but due to the disease spread, the filming has been put on hold until at least May.

A month ago, the six original cast members and NBC comedy producers at Warner Bros. formally reached a deal to reunite for an exclusive HBO special, according to The Hollywood Reporter. The reunions will cost more than twice as much per episode, and the specials will cost between 2.5 million U.S. dollars and 3 million U.S. dollars.

The special "Friends" reunion will reunite the original cast, including Jennifer Aniston, Lisa Kudrow, Courteney Cox, David Schwimmer, Matt LeBlanc and Matthew Perry.

"Friends" ran for ten seasons and 236 episodes, airing on NBC on September 22, 1994, to May 6, 2004. There was no sequel to "Friends" after the 10th series ended, and Warner Bros paid 425 million U.S. dollars for the five-year rights in 2019. Netflix also tried to hold the 2019 rights to this series for 80 million U.S. dollars to 100 million U.S. dollars but lost out to Warner Bros.

(Cover: The Rembrandts performs the official music video for the Friends theme song I'll be There for you with the cast at 30 Rockefeller Plaza in New York City. /VCG)